One of the biggest factors contributing to a general lack of reading among all age groups is that we feel we simply do not have the time to read anymore. Finishing a novel is a massive time commitment – particularly if you are a slower reader. With assignments and internships and 9-5 jobs and a dozen television series we want to binge watch, our day calendars are full enough as it is. There are 24 hours in a day – you might spend 8 of those sleeping and another 8 of them working, 2 of them commuting, 3 of them checking social media, socialising, watching television etc, and while sometimes it may not seem like there are enough hours in the day, there are plenty of ways you can fit reading in to your regular routine and reap the benefits of doing so. Here are just a few:
- Read while commuting
Peak hour traffic can be frustrating, prolonging your travel time as you venture off to work or uni. If you have a long commute, instead of whiling away the time by scrolling aimlessly through your Facebook news feed, why not read a book instead? An hour on the train can equate to two or three finished chapters of a novel.
- Read while you refuel
Whether you have an hour for lunch or just twenty minutes, your lunch break provides the perfect opportunity for reading a few pages. Reading is an excellent de-stressor, so if you’re finding yourself having a particularly rough day, reading in your break can be just the thing to take you away from that stress.
- Keep a book on you at all times
This may sound silly, but there are so many small opportunities throughout the day that are typically wasted that could be spent reading instead. Whether you’re waiting for a friend to show up, or you’ve arrived early for class, or you’re visiting the doctor or the dentist and there’s a small wait, there are plenty of short, unnoticed moments during an average day that provide opportunities for reading.
- Read in the late or early hours
Reading just before you go to sleep is a perfect way to relax yourself and shut off your brain after a tiring day spent at school or work, and is far better for you than watching television or playing a video game (be careful not to sacrifice your sleeping pattern for the sake of finishing a book though; staying up until 2am when you have to be up the next morning at 7am does you no good – trust us). Alternatively, why not try setting your alarm half an hour early? Squeezing in half an hour of reading before you have to get up can warm your brain up before you have to commit to more strenuous and stressful morning tasks, such as deciding what to have for breakfast, or what to wear that day.
- Schedule a daily reading time
If you’re the type of person who benefits from dividing your day into specific timeframes, try scheduling in a specific time for reading every day. Whether it’s in the morning, in the middle of the day or at night before bed, allotting an hour or so of your day planner just to reading can be the perfect way to ensure you read regularly.
So there you have it, 5 easy ways you can squeeze reading into your average day.
Quote of the day – “I cannot sleep unless I am surrounded by books.” – Jorge Luis Borges